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Spectrum: Autism Research News

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Science & Society

From funding decisions to scientific fraud, a wide range of societal factors shape autism research.

February 2013

Flexible brain

by  /  8 February 2013

Transcranial magnetic stimulation may provide a noninvasive approach to studying how connections in the human brain change in response to new information, and how that process is altered in autism, says Lindsay Oberman.


Large study catalogs effects of autism candidate gene’s loss

by  /  7 February 2013

Deletions in the autism-linked gene AUTS2 trigger a variety of symptoms, including intellectual disability, developmental delay, a small head and unusual facial features, suggests a large study published 7 February in the American Journal of Human Genetics.


Robots could fill in for autism therapists

by  /  6 February 2013

Robots may be able to help treat children with autism when qualified therapists aren’t available, according to a study published 3 December in IEEE Translational Neural Systems Rehabilitation Engingeering.


Clinical research: Attention deficit forecasts autism traits

by  /  5 February 2013

Children with attention difficulties may later show signs of autism, such as trouble holding a conversation, according to a study published 14 November in Psychological Medicine.


Is social disinterest a symptom of Rett syndrome?

by  /  4 February 2013

Feedback on our website from parents of socially proficient children with Rett syndrome raises interesting questions about the disorder: Is social disinterest really a symptom of the disorder?


Money matters

by  /  1 February 2013

Scientists may be getting duplicate grants for the same project, to the tune of tens of millions of dollars in funding, according to an analysis published 30 January in Nature.

January 2013

Autism-linked protein differs in male and female brains

by  /  24 January 2013

The autism-linked protein MET is expressed at lower levels in the brains of men with autism than in control brains, according to unpublished research presented Thursday at the Salk Institute, Fondation IPSEN and Nature Symposium on Biological Complexity in La Jolla, California. Women with autism do not differ from healthy controls, however.


Mouse stem cells enable study of Rett syndrome

by  /  23 January 2013

Researchers have made neurons from the skin cells of mice that model Rett syndrome, according to a study published in the December issue Molecular Psychiatry.


Ethics abroad

by  /  22 January 2013

Resource-poor countries need better safeguards for doing ethical studies, says a new study published 3 January in the Journal of Autism and Developmental Disorders.


Rescue funds

by  /  15 January 2013

The Federal Emergency Management Agency has designated funds to help New York University’s Langone Medical Center replace lost equipment and relocate research labs damaged during Hurricane Sandy.